Late last year I was at my wits end trying to think of ways to add more raw fruits and veggies to my son's diet. While his eating had improved, he was still missing out on the healing nutrients and enzymes that a variety of raw veggies and fruits contain. This was especially important to me since my son became prone to asthma and bronchitis earlier last year.
Around the same time, I was seriously debating cutting juice from his diet. Setting a clear boundary as far as how much was okay was a struggle, and I suspected it was contributing to him not having an interest in the real stuff. One night while sharing my conflicted thoughts with some friends it dawned on me that juicing would solve both issues.
We didn't get a juicer as quickly as I would have liked. A good one is not cheap, and from my research it's important to get a quality one. The size of the chute, ease of cleaning and level of noise were common barriers to use mentioned by many reviewers. Also, I learned that low quality juicers reach temperatures that can destroy nutrients, similar to what happens during cooking. We wanted to set ourselves up for success so we decided to hold off until we could get the right one for our needs.
Good thing we did, because we ended up being gifted one for Christmas. My husband's mother even got us the one we had our hearts set on; a Breville BJE510XL. When Christmas came it was love at first sight. Our juicing journey was finally beginning.
At first the kids weren't interested. The texture is different than processed juice which I suppose is why they turned their nose up to it at first. By the second week of water and almond milk my son began requesting that we make him apple juice from the juicer. Once he was accustomed to that, he asked me to put an orange down the chute. Then one day he had me add a lemon.
Taking notice of this pattern, I decided that I would wait for the perfect opportunity to sneak other fruits and veggies in. I didn't want to destroy his trust, so I decided that I would go with produce of a similar color and start with small amounts. First I added in fruits like pineapple and strawberries. Then I got brave and added a carrot. The progress I was making was wonderful, but I doubted that I would ever be able to add greens in. Then one day the door opened. Logan started asking that green apples be added to his juice. I took this as the green light and added a kale leaf to his juice. He drank it down without hesitation! I had found a way in. Sweet victory!
Now I use green apples as the base, and add in small amounts of whatever greens I have. Spinach, swiss chard, kale and collards all work well. The lemon that he insists on actually works to cut the taste of the greens. The apple and orange sweeten it up making it an enjoyment to his senses. I just pay attention not to add too many greens as he is particularly sensitive to the texture. My husband made a blend last night that got pushed aside because the texture was too thick. So it's been a bit of trial and error for us.
Do you juice? What blends are your favorite?